Jumping the gun

SIR, — At a recent West Herts Hospitals Trust (WHHT) board meeting, their chief executive admitted he had not yet submitted an outline business case for Watford s new hospital and was not sure if he would even get PFI (Private Finance Initiative) funding

SIR, - At a recent West Herts Hospitals Trust (WHHT) board meeting, their chief executive admitted he had not yet submitted an outline business case for Watford's new hospital and was not sure if he would even get PFI (Private Finance Initiative) funding for it. Nevertheless he and his chairman continue to plan the closure of Hemel Hempstead Hospital's acute services - years before any new hospital is built - as though the future was certain. They clearly want the downgrading to happen quickly.

The are also disregarding the quoted statements made in the Health Service Journal recently by the medical director of the East of England Strategic Health Authority (EESHA) - of which the WHHT is a part - which says: "But the idea that we could manage with fewer accident and emergency departments was not something we considered for very long." This was endorsed by the EESHA chief executive.

They have apparently faced the reality of our needs unlike the WHHT which thinks only of cutting costs to reduce their deficit regardless of the effect on patients and staff or climate-change needs.

ZENA BULLMORE,


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Dacorum Hospital Action Group.

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